Plans for a new business and retail development adjacent to the Blue Light Hub at the Beehive in Ulverston will deliver almost 300 jobs and aims to bring leading food retailers M&S and Aldi to the town.
The scheme will see Lake District Farmers move its high quality meat processing hub to the Beehive from its current base in Tebay, and Ulverston-based engineering consultancy FETL Ltd (Furness Engineering and Technology Ltd) remaining in Ulverston to move into a new purpose-built headquarters.
Other businesses which will be based on the site if the plans go-ahead include a solicitors’ practice, vet’s surgery and an insurance office.
The M&S Foodhall and Aldi store could together create more than 70 jobs. Combined with almost 50 jobs at the Blue Light Hub itself, the development could see more than 300 workers based at the Beehive on the A590.
The plans are being prepared by the Rawdon Property Group, which is an experienced developer of commercial and retail projects in the UK. The company made a presentation to Ulverston Town Council at the site on Wednesday, to explain the scale of the project and the advantages it will bring to Ulverston.
Rawdon Property Group director Brian Scott led the presentation to unveil the outline plan for the site prior to public consultations beginning in Ulverston in September.
He explained: “We have worked hard to attract companies such as Lake District Farmers and FETL Ltd which were looking at alternative sites for purpose-built accommodation outside Ulverston, and we are delighted to be retaining jobs and bringing new employment opportunities to the town. But the commitment we have received from M&S and Aldi is the vital element in making the commercial development of the site viable.
“The site is already designated by South Lakeland District Council for job creation, and the fact that work is already under way on the road junction and groundworks for the Blue Light Hub is a considerable advantage.”
Scott said RPG aims to work closely with Ulverston Town Council and SLDC to ensure the new development delivers real benefits for the town as a whole, not simply in the new jobs and those retained for the future, but also by providing shoppers with an even greater incentive to come and enjoy what the town has to offer.
“A lot of people have talked about the advantages of having an M&S Foodhall and Aldi in Ulverston, in terms of bringing people to the town and encouraging local people to shop here instead of heading for supermarkets in Barrow or Kendal.”
“Most of all we want to hear what the people of Ulverston think about the plans – and aim to start that consultation process in September.”